Downtown Sanford eatery La Sirena Gorda (The Fat Mermaid) closed permanently last week.
The Mexican restaurant, located at 118 S Palmetto , did not open last Thursday (March 31), according to an employee. The restaurant’s Facebook page says the establishment is permanently closed.
The building’s landlord, Kim House, confirmed the restaurant’s closing. House said she currently is in negotiations to lease the space.
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La Sirena Gorda started out as a hip and trendy new place in Sanford with great service, food, and value. It was gorgeous and had a lot going for it. But when new owners took over, it began to suffer little by little. I wanted it to succeed, to continue the initial success, but it was not to be. You cannot run a successful restaurant from one place, first as bartender, then as cook. You have to be everywhere. And so the restaurant suffered from indifferent help, slow and spotty service, and a lack of professionalism–at times it seemed more like a family playground than a fine eating establishment. I’m sorry to see it go, but not surprised. I wanted it to succeed, but it was not to be. The spot is a gem. I hope someone new and experienced can come in and make this place all it can and should be.
The key ingredient they missed was consistency. Every time I go to Willow Tree I know that what I am going to get will be the same way as I got it before. It is not the case with all restaurants downtown. If the food/service is unpredictable it is difficult to keep supporting the establishment. I have had mixed experiences at La Sirena, and most were sub par.